Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2015 - 41


Sybil Scott stands in front of her father's home garage which she is trying to have restored into
a museum honoring her father and his career.

the South where two decades had
made little difference in prejudice.
Born in 1921, Scott traveled
the segregated south, encountering "Whites Only" signs at restaurants, hotels and elsewhere. He was
turned away from tracks because he
was black and dealt with intimidation from other drivers, officials
and fans. "He expected that and
coped," Sybil Scott says, "but he
didn't back down and took things a
step at a time."
There's a story that Franklin
Scott verified about another driver,
Jack Smith, who had repeatedly
tried to run Scott off the track. Finally, when Smith drove door-todoor with him pointing a menacing finger, Scott solved the problem
by calmly brandishing the pistol
he had tucked away. Smith didn't
bother him again.
"We didn't even know Daddy
had a gun," Franklin Scott says.
"He was a serious competitor but he
taught us not to be confrontational. He fought his battles a different
way. We were raised to have humility, integrity and perseverance."
Franklin and Wendell Jr. worked
on the cars with their father, whose
three years as an Army mechanic
honed his natural skills and creativity. When money was short he used
duct tape as ear plugs.

"My mother, Mary [who died
July 2, in Danville, at age 91], always cooked our meals on the road
and she would drive to Kannapolis to pick up tires and paint while
Daddy was always working," Sybil
Scott says. "Mommy would do the
driving to the races while Daddy
slept. He might wake up and we'd
be crossing the Throgs Neck Bridge
in New York.
"We had a good relationship
with most of the racing group,"
she continues. "But dangers lurked
around us. We used to have to come
into cities different ways to avoid
problems. My sister, Deborah, and
I were the scorers and we'd have
our brothers escort us from the car
to the scoring stand-things were
said and things could have been
thrown."
But beyond the difficulties the
family remembers the good times.
Wendell Scott had a rollicking
sense of humor, Sybil Scott says,
able to leave people rolling on the
floor in laughter.
"When the preacher came to
dinner," she says, "Daddy would
beg Mommy to let him tell just one
joke. He loved to laugh and joke
with his friends. Mommy always
called him "Daddy" and the fans
called him "WenDELL as in "give
him hell WenDELL." But his mother

always said "His name is WENdell."
"He was a tremendous athlete-
a bicyclist and a skater," says Franklin. "He could roller skate on one
foot faster than on two."
Wendell Scott retired from NASCAR in 1973 after a crash at Talladega Super Speedway almost crippled
him. Scott died of spinal cancer on
December 22, 1990 and today the
family works, each in their own
way, to honor his legacy. In 2011
Warrick Scott launched the Wendell
Scott Foundation, a non-profit that
encourages young people to pursue
careers in science and technology.
The foundation is, Franklin Scott
says, a fulfillment of a dream Wendell Scott had half a century ago. He
remembers sitting in a diner on a
racing tour with his father and seeing half a dozen young kids hanging out on the street corner.
"He said if he ever got rich he'd
start orphanages all over the south,"
he said. "If he ever had gotten rich
he would have been the greatest
philanthropist in the world-he
was just that kind of guy."
Sybil Scott has helped produce
two documentaries about her father
and works with NASCAR diversity
programs. She works with the city
of Danville to restore her father's
garage with hopes of expanding
it into a museum. Until then she
maintains an exhibit in the Danville Science Center, a division of
the Science Museum of Virginia.
When Scott was selected for the
Hall of Fame there were questions
about his having won only a single
NASCAR race.
"He might not have the record
statistics but the Hall of Fame is not
all about statistics-there is more
to it," Ned Jarrett says. "Now with
Darryl Wallace we are finally seeing
some results coming from the path
Wendell Scott set."
What would Scott say about his
own Hall of Fame induction?
Although he undoubtedly would
be pleased, Franklin Scott remembers his father saying, "I want to
be known as a race car driver, not a
black race car driver." 
September/October 41



Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2015

The Family Farm is Alive and Well in the Virginia Mountains
7 States of Mountain Treks, Complete with a Beer or Wine Stop
The Photo Essay: Autumn Beauty
Wendell Scott Gets His Due
Weekend: Where the North Carolina and Tennessee Mountains Rub Shoulders
Chillin’ in Chattanooga
Charlottesville to Charleston aboard Amtrak
Great Tastes of the West Virginia Panhandle
Cavender Cabins: Enjoy the North Georgia Woods
From the Editor
Letters / Worth a Click
Mill Creek Stories
The Hike
Creature Feature
Mountain Report
Great Home Buys in the Mountains
Country Roads
Festivals & Events
Singing in the Garden
Guest Column: Liz Belcher
Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2015 - Intro
Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2015 - Cover1
Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2015 - Cover2
Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2015 - 3
Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2015 - 4
Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2015 - B1
Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2015 - B2
Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2015 - 5
Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2015 - From the Editor
Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2015 - Letters / Worth a Click
Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2015 - Mill Creek Stories
Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2015 - 9
Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2015 - The Hike
Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2015 - 11
Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2015 - Creature Feature
Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2015 - Mountain Report
Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2015 - Great Home Buys in the Mountains
Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2015 - Country Roads
Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2015 - 16
Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2015 - 17
Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2015 - Festivals & Events
Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2015 - 19
Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2015 - 20
Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2015 - 21
Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2015 - The Family Farm is Alive and Well in the Virginia Mountains
Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2015 - 23
Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2015 - 24
Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2015 - 25
Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2015 - 26
Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2015 - 27
Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2015 - 7 States of Mountain Treks, Complete with a Beer or Wine Stop
Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2015 - 29
Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2015 - 30
Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2015 - 31
Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2015 - 32
Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2015 - 33
Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2015 - The Photo Essay: Autumn Beauty
Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2015 - 35
Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2015 - 36
Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2015 - 37
Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2015 - Wendell Scott Gets His Due
Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2015 - 39
Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2015 - 40
Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2015 - 41
Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2015 - Weekend: Where the North Carolina and Tennessee Mountains Rub Shoulders
Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2015 - 43
Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2015 - 44
Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2015 - Chillin’ in Chattanooga
Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2015 - 46
Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2015 - 47
Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2015 - Charlottesville to Charleston aboard Amtrak
Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2015 - 49
Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2015 - 50
Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2015 - 51
Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2015 - Great Tastes of the West Virginia Panhandle
Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2015 - 53
Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2015 - 54
Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2015 - 55
Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2015 - 56
Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2015 - 57
Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2015 - 58
Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2015 - 59
Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2015 - Cavender Cabins: Enjoy the North Georgia Woods
Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2015 - 61
Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2015 - 62
Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2015 - Singing in the Garden
Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2015 - 64
Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2015 - 65
Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2015 - Guest Column: Liz Belcher
Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2015 - Cover3
Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2015 - Cover4
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